Women are leaving the workplace. According to the Monthly Labor Review there has been a upward trend of women exiting the workforce over the past 10 years. The publication reports that 75.3 percent of women ages 25 to 54 were in the workforce — a decrease from 76.8 percent.
There are distinct challenges that women face in the workplace. Many companies are exploring these issues and focusing initiatives on obtaining, engaging, and retaining women leaders in the workplace but many are failing. This is a concern because significant investments are made in acquiring talent, and women leaving the workforce in great numbers amounts to a loss of resources and talent.
Incorporating authenticity is important because it allows women to feel more accepted and comfortable at work. Authenticity is about being genuine and working in an environment that honors one’s gender, culture, education, and family values. It is essential to welcome authenticity in the workplace so employees are themselves and more at ease, ultimately contributing to higher job satisfaction and contribution to the organization. Women should feel like they are able to be consistent in all domains of life, whether they are at work or home.
Job enjoyment is another aspect for organizations to consider. Intrinsic motivation for work helps keep employees around. This is one reason why it is important to provide challenge in the workplace and offer variety and development opportunities. Maintaining interest is a key for retaining women.
Research indicates that women are looking for ways to enhance their careers through networking, mentoring, and staying connected with other women in the organization. Many company initiatives may be driven by the needs of women, but these outcomes are often beneficial to and appreciated by the entire workforce. Ask yourself one question... how many women are on your board?